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Case No. 21-1961

In the Interest of C.P. and N.P., Minor Children

L.P., Mother-Appellant

Attorney for Appellant Mother

Raya D. Dimitrova

Attorney for Appellee State

Michelle R. Becker, Assistant Attorney General

Guardian ad Litem

Magdalena Reese

Court of Appeals

Court of Appeals Opinion

Opinion Number:
Date Published:
May 11, 2022

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Kimberly Ayotte, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.  Opinion by May, P.J.  (8 pages)

            A mother appeals the termination of her parental rights.  She challenges the statutory grounds, claims termination is not in the children’s best interests, contends the juvenile court should have applied a permissive exception to termination to instead establish a guardianship, and argues the juvenile court should have bifurcated the guardian ad litem (GAL) and attorney role for the older child’s representation.  OPINION HOLDS: The State established statutory grounds for termination.  Termination is in the children’s best interests.  We decline to apply a permissive exception to forgo termination.  The mother failed to preserve her request for a guardianship as an alternative to termination.  And the juvenile court did not abuse its discretion by denying the motion to bifurcate the GAL and attorney role.

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